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[ it wasn't supposed to be this way ]
The thing about Atlantis is that it´s everything you´d ever wanted. It´s more than everything you´d ever wanted. It´s so much more. So much more exciting, so much more advanced, so much more enigmatic. So much more than anything you´d ever, ever imagined. It´s also everything you´d never wanted.
It´s walking into the unknown and finding just exactly what everyone´s warned you about but you´d never believed in. They´d always told you the worst possible scenario and then they´d told you that it wasn´t the half of it, that they didn´t even know the worst case scenario. You´d never believed it though, not even after everything you´d seen, you´d never believed it would be this.
This wasn´t what you were supposed to be doing, this wasn´t where you were supposed to be. You were supposed to be a scientist, you were supposed to be an explorer. You were supposed to uncover the mysteries of the world and open it up before anyone else got the chance to. You were supposed to prove the myths, you were supposed to create your own. You were supposed to be able to sit back and enjoy it.
Instead you´re here, in this city no one had known existed, no one had believed in, this city of myths, and you were in command. Some how, some way, you were in command of an army made of scientists who weren´t supposed to be here either, and soldiers who were in a way they´d never imagined.
Soldiers who´d thought they got the cush job, who thought they were getting a vacation, where they could live out their dreams of being an astronaut and flying spaceships, and yeah, yeah, maybe, every great once in a while, they´d have to do their actual job, but mostly, mostly they were supposed to sit back and enjoy it too.
Sometimes you wonder if he hadn´t died, if Sumner hadn´t died, if you would have passed off the reigns to him. If you would have sat back and let Sumner take control, turn this into a military operation, and you wonder if may be you should have. If maybe, yeah, Atlantis should have been an exploration, a discovery, but it wasn´t, not anymore, not now, not since they stepped through that gate. You wonder if maybe it is a mission, if maybe it is a battlefield, if maybe it should have been military.
And you wonder if John Sheppard had never come, if he´d never been there, if you would have packed your bags up and gone to another world and become one of them, one of the Pegasus natives, like Teyla, like the Athosians, running for your life when the Wraith darts came and picked you off two by three. Sometimes you wonder if that would have been better, easier, to just give up then instead of still somehow having some kind of hope that only gets dashed at the end of each day.
Because you were never supposed to be this. You were never supposed to be sitting at this table looking across at a tired and drained soldier telling you how many men he´d lost, smiling and meaning it when the answer was only two. You weren´t supposed to be weighing your options and saying yes, John, take a team and rescue our men, you weren´t supposed to be saying no, John, because it´s a suicide mission and if you don´t we lose two but if you do we lose seven, and I won´t do that. You were never supposed to be this person.
You were supposed to be watching Rodney and Zelenka fighting over formulas and bickering over coffee rations. You were supposed to listen to Carson babbling about new discoveries and once you´d even thought maybe this is where you´d find the cure for aids, maybe this is where you´d find the cure for cancer. You were supposed to be looking through microscopes and crying because my god, it´s so much more than you´d imagined, it´s so much more than you´d hoped for.
You were supposed to be engaged to Simon, you were supposed to have kids with him, you were supposed to be on this mission for however many years and then you were supposed to go back, or Simon was supposed to come here, and you were supposed to be with him, because he was just like you. He knew the smell of the lab and the feeling of looking through the microscope and seeing things that had never been seen before. You were supposed to love him and marry him and be safe with him forever.
Because you´d never wanted to be this kind of woman, you were never supposed to fall in love with the guy that wasn´t supposed to be there, the guy that walked in completely oblivious one day to ship out the next because he touched things and made them come to life. You never wanted to be the woman to watch him go off and know deep down in your soul that there was a very real chance that he might never come back, or that he might come back broken. You never wanted to feel your heart in your throat every time you heard his voice six hours after you were supposed to. You never wanted to be a cliché.
But this is where you are, because it´s never mattered what anyone wanted. You were warned and it doesn´t matter that you´d never believed it, it doesn´t matter that you´d never wanted to be in charge, it doesn´t matter that you´d never wanted to fall in love, it doesn´t matter that this isn´t anything like you´d wanted, what you´d hope, because it´s just the way it is. It´s the way it is and you´ve never been one to back off and you´re not going to start now.
So each new day breaks and you roll out of bed and you shower and you dress and take a deep breath, square your shoulders, and you pretend that you know what you´re doing because you keep hoping one day you will. You dress the part because there´s no one else to do it for you and these people need you, they need that, they need someone to know, and you can be that, you can do that, and if you can´t the least you can do is pretend.
And if John looks at you and sees right through you and smiles anyway, if Rodney holds back an insult that would have spilled forth at any other time, if Carson keeps quiet about the ethics of what you´re doing, then it´s just confirmation that you´re doing the right thing, because they get it too, they´re doing it too, they´re out of their element and scared and overwhelmed and confused just like you are because no one ever expects this, but thank god you chose them because you don´t think you know anyone else who can pretend this well.
Because this is what you do, this is what you are, you´re a scientist and you wanted to discover new things and sometimes discoveries cost. Sometimes they cost more than you´re willing to pay but you have to pay anyway because it´s worth it. It´s so worth it, and even after everything you´ve been through, after everything you´ve seen, after everything you´ve never wanted and been forced to accept, it´s still worth it.
It´s more than worth it. It´s Atlantis.